Friday, November 20, 2009

Coast to coast - twitching again

Under the thinly veiled disguise of visiting Mrs B's Aunt and Uncle in Kristianstad, we all went twitching again today. The location was a larch plantation on the east coast of Sweden, near Landön, close to Kristianstad. The target a 1K male two-barred crossbill that has been present for some time.

After crossing Sweden (105 minutes) we found ourselves at the site and spotted a few birders loafing about. It quickly became apparent that a large flock of common crossbills was feeding here, so we all tramped into the middle of the plantation. Pretty soon we were eyeball to eyeball with a gang of common's, in amongst them goldcrests, blue tits and red squirrels. A real feeding frenzy. Occasionally and rather excitingly, in amongst the racket made by the common's, you could hear the 'toy trumpet' call of a two-barred close by. It did not take long before it flew up into a nearby pine to deal with a larch cone and we all got great views. I will not torture you with another of my appalling photos, check this one out instead (whoopsie, that reads wrong, it's a good photo Magnus). Job done, time for grilled sausages by the sea and then the short drive to the see the relations.

As well as being a Swedish tick, I think this may have been only my second ever two-barred crossbill. Pretty exciting stuff.

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